Archives for posts with tag: Amazaké

But good amazake.

I made 2 basic mistakes. I mixed in some old rice, and I steamed one portion twice as long as I should have. I always steam the rice about 20 minutes but got mixed up and cooked it twice. The old rice got a little soggy, and the double cooked got really soggy. I can probably save the properly cooked rice as koji, but the soggiest portion will have to be relegated to the desert corner. It is very sweet with a tinge of alcohol – amazake, so it can be eaten as candy now or be made into a desert. So bad turns good.

Now I’ll have to take a break and clean the equipment before starting up again.

The second batch of rye koji is a great success too. 


That’s the last batch of koji for this year – 27 batches in all. Some have gone to making miso and amazake already, but there should be plenty left for more miso now and this fall, as well as for selling. And if I run out, I can always make more in december. 


Koji ambrosia

First make amazake. Boil brown rice with no salt until soft and gooey. Add rice koji. Mix and keep warm, 50 – 60 degrees C for about 12 hours. The koji enzymes break the rice down – in particular, the starch into sugars. The result is the sweet pudding amazake. 

To make koji ambrosia add grated ginger, lemon peel, more liquid if neccessary, mix until smooth with a mixer and warm a little. 

The first time I tasted this was in Japan almost half a century ago. We sat in a circle on the floor and passed a bowl of warm spiced amazake around. I thought I must be in heaven and this the drink of the gods. 

I was hooked!

Besides making miso and soy sauce you can use koji for making amazake and sake rice wine.

All you need is some rice koji, rice and a warm place. About half as much koji as rice.

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Cook the rice to the point where it has a mushy consistency. Let it cool, then mix in the rice koji. Add enough water to maintain the thin mushiness.

Now put it in a warm place for 8 hours. I put mine in the heat cabinet along with the koji that is in the process of growing. Instructions for making amazake recommend keeping the temperature at 55 degrees centigrade, but the 30 degrees I have works fine. It just takes a little longer.

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Taste it after 8 hours. If it is sweat enough, harvest. if not, let it continue to ferment in the heat for a few more hours or as long as necessary.

When it is done, you can heat it up to boiling point to stop the enzyme action (the amylaze is breaking down the starches of the rice into simple sugars) and keep in the refrigerater.

Amazake can be eaten as it is or used as a sweetener. You can use it in cookies, cakes, shakes, smoothies, puddings and much more.

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If you let it continue to ferment, wild yeasts will gradually turn the sugars into alcohol. After filtering out the solids you’ll have sake.

I prefer the sweet to the alcohol.

Step 8

The evening of the sixth day

It is time to package the koji that has been drying for two days. In plastic bags it will keep for years in the coolness of the food storage room of the cellar. I will probably use it up within a half a year.

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The 800 grams of rice has now become 700 grams of rice koji full of enzymes. Amylase which catalyses the breakdown of starch into sugars, lipase which facilitates the breakdown of fats and protease for the breakdown of proteins. Perfect for making soybeans more palatable as in miso and soy sauce fermentation.

This 700 grams of koji will make as much as 3 kilos of miso. It can also be used to make amazaké rice pudding and saké rice wine.

And that brings us to the end of one koji making cycle.

However, the next batch of rice koji that has been growing these last two days is ready for harvest, and the third batch will now be put to soak. This succession of procedures will continue for the next few weeks.